No guarantee that human rights violations will cease – Roque

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THERE is no guarantee that the government can ensure that human rights violations will not be committed in its campaign against terrorists, insurgents and illegal drugs, says a top Palace official.

However, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque assured that those responsible for it will be penalized under the law even as he admitted government “lapses” in its war against the anti-government forces and syndicates behind the lucrative illegal drug trade.

Interviewed on television, Roque cited the issue on red-tagging that saw military linking personalities and groups to communist rebels without any evidence even as he warded off accountability of Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana whom he claimed as having repeatedly scolded Lieutenant General Antonio Parlade Jr. over statements linking personalities and groups to communist rebels.

“In fairness again kay Secretary Lorenzana naman, ilang beses na niyang pinagsabihan si General Parlade, mag-ingat ka, at ilang beses na rin dumistansiya ‘yung Department of National Defense sa mga binigkas na salita ni General Parlade,” said Roque.

Roque likewise took a swipe at Parlade whom he said has issued statements that are “far from the truth.” Parlade is the commander of the military’s Southern Luzon Command and spokesperson for the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC).

“So alam natin na minsan na maraming sinasabi ‘yung mga spokesperson ng Hukbong Sandatahan na malayo sa katotohahan, at yung mga sinasabi ni Secretary Lorenzana ay nag-attest na nagkakamali ‘yung mga opisyales na iyan,” Roque said. “So ang latest order ni Secretary Lorenzana ay maging maingat at panagutin ‘yung mga nagsasalita kung wala silang ebidensya.”

Roque further admitted that the government is not perfect. What is important, he said, is that those responsible for it will be penalized under the law.

“Para sa akin ‘yan ay pagkilala na hindi tayo perpekto, na meron talagang lapses at meron talagang dapat parusahan,” he said.

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